I’ll admit that I’ve had a simplistic view of the advertising worlds relationship with celebrity but today I learned how simplistic.
Obviously celebrity endorsements occur. They run the gamut from Superbowl winners claim to head to Disneyland all the way to pimping out personal hygiene products like incontinence pads and erectile dysfunction medication.
In my basic view I thought a celebrity would be approached by their agent with something like, “Hey, you have a new movie coming out and Pepsi is a big sponsor. We’ve lined up a commercial for you.” or “We haven’t seen your face on film for a while so why not do a Cereal box promo” or even “You don’t really make that much in your field of sport so let get you selling razors.”
I was reading in “Celebrity: How Entertainers took over the World” by Marina Hyde about the Davie Brown index. This takes the “science” of celebrity endorsements to a whole new level. This survey index keeps a large statistical pool of citizens – like 1.5 million responders large – at the ready to do weekly reviews of over 1,500 celebrities. Each survey is designed to elicit the responders weekly views if the celebrities in 8 specific categories: trust, appeal, influence, trendsetting, notice (ubiquity), endorsement (spokespersonability), aspiration (how much you want to be them) and awareness.
What a crazy world we live in. Media and celebrate saturation is such as dirty industry – akin to used car salesmen!
So, we are being target marketed in such insidious ways. Celebrities who want to raise their index can simply work on their weaker “key indicators” and if they are asked to do a promotion for a questionable product they can gear that promotion to overseas markets or smaller regional ads.
Even celebrities who may wish to downplay their fame ( yeah…right?!) don’t even have the option as they are included in this index and then, I’m sure, are pestered to sell specific products that “fit” their personal survey dynamics.
What a sick system of consumerism we support.